Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will on Monday pay a working visit to Armenia, where he will hold talks with his counterpart Edward Nalbandian, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
The ministry said the meeting “will consider issues of mutual interest on the bilateral, regional and international agenda.”
The Russian minister is also expected to be received by Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan.
In April 2015, Nalbandian visited Moscow. The ministers regularly meet at events of various integration associations, including the Commonwealth of Independent States (a loose association of former Soviet republics), the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and at other international sites.
Lavrov and Nalbandian last met at a forum of graduates of the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), held in the Armenian capital in late October. The two countries’ top diplomats are graduates of that higher educational establishment.
The sides have not official announced what the talks will be focused at during the ministerial meeting, but the situation in Nagorno-Karabakh is likely to be a central topic. The situation on the Armenian-Azerbaijani border has remained very tense recently, with the sides regularly accusing each other of shelling and provocations.
Against that backdrop, the Minsk Group of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe for settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, whose co-chairs are representatives of Russia, France and the United States, has announced preparation for the meeting of the Armenian and Azerbaijani leaders, which is to be held by the yearend.
Previous contacts between the two countries’ heads were held in August 2014 in the southern Russian resort of Sochi with participation of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Lavrov visited Azerbaijan in early September. He expressed hope for progress in the Nagorno-Karabakh issue.
Besides the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement, the Russian and Armenian ministers have many other topics for discussion. Armenia joined the Eurasian Economic Union in January 2015. Issues of deepening integration and ensuring with that the interests of the association’s members traditionally hold an important place in EAEU member states’ discussions.
Besides, Yerevan took over presidency of the CSTO in September 2015, whereas with the growth of the Islamist threat from Afghanistan, the urgency of efficient interaction within the framework of that organization increases.
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